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Gazprom Reduces Gas Flows To Italy

Russia's Gazprom has reduced the flow of gas to Italy, an Eni spokesman has said, according to Reuters. Gazprom did not give a reason for the reduction.

"Eni confirms that Gazprom has communicated a limited reduction in gas supplies for today, amounting to approximately 15%," the spokesman for Eni said, adding that the company was constantly monitoring the situation.

On Tuesday, Gazprom announced that it was cutting natural gas flows to Germany via the Nord Stream pipeline by 40% due to needed equipment repairs that had been delayed. Gas supplies via Nord Stream would therefore be limited to 100 million cubic meters per day, compared to the planned volume of 167 million cubic meters per day, Gazprom said.

News of Tuesday's reduced gas flows to Germany said natural gas prices soaring by 13%. Nord Stream flows rose slightly on Wednesday. But in July, Nord Stream is scheduled to undergo planned maintenance for two weeks. During this time, there will be no gas flow via Nord Stream to Germany, Gundesnetzagentur said earlier this week.

Italy gets 40% of its imported gas from Russia, equivalent to 29 billion cubic meters, according to Reuters.

Italy is already working on sourcing gas from alternative suppliers, including from Algeria, Azerbaijan, the DRC, Angola, and Qatar. Eni is also in talks with Egypt about boosting LNG imports. Eni has already struck a deal with EGAS to increase nat gas imports by 3 billion cubic meters per day. The new agreement would boost capacity to send even more LNG to Italy, but this would likely take up to two years to complete.

Both Germany and Italy told companies last month that they could open ruble accounts, which would allow them to continue gas purchases from Russia without running afoul of sanctions.

While no reason was given for Wednesday's gas disruption to Italy, Germany's Economy Minister Robert Habeck said Gazprom's Tuesday decision to reduce gas flows to Germany was politically motivated and not due to technical issues like Gazprom said.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group. More